Dither

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Three blackbird eggs, in the nest in the wild rosebush. Ain’t they cute? 

I am dithering over a project. A project I will need to turn in eventually to my publisher. Yes, I have one. Stop snickering or giving me pitying looks at my delusions of being a real writer. Snort in your general direction, haters.

Okay. Sarcasm aside…!

Saint Lysette and Bloody Alice. It’s the third in my House trilogy. Alice in Oregonlandia is done, and in line to be seen by Kensington Gore’s editor/s.

Alice takes up about ten years after House On Clark Boulevard ended. The ‘tale’ moves to the world of Alice, Nancy’s daughter. Stuff happens. The end.

Yeah, I should write PR and press releases! For more money than the actual novelists ever get for their words, phrases and entire pages of words and phrases.

My mind went, hey, there’s a third book here. With everything neatly wrapped up, explained and then burned to the ground or somethin’. Cause. Trilogies. Every author should have some.

It’s like. That can of tuna on your shelf. Just in case.

I don’t like tuna so my can of tuna would have dust on it. But it would still be there in case I needed it for something. Maybe a sammich? I’d also have to have pickles, lemon, dill, onion powder, garlic…basically my tuna sammich would taste like anything but tuna. I like tuna melts.

I’m weird and contradictory. I realize that right now at this moment. Personal growth!

Dither.

I know why I’m starting this last opus over and over. I HAVEN’T DECIDED WHAT THE ACTUAL STORY IS.

I knew, vaguely, that Alice would have to return to that old house and…and something would happen that would not be what was expected by any involved. Vague, sure. But. That was the general story in my head and it seemed to write itself for Alice in Oregonlandia. House on Clark Boulevard had the same feel to it but different. Is that crystal clear to everyone??

I just got into ‘that groove’ that hits when you write. Whether it’s novels or poems or short stories or plays or manifestos about why tuna is gross.

I’m not a fish person. I find the taste of fish gross and yucky. I’ll eat fish sticks but only if they taste more of the tarter sauce or whatever dipping sauce is available. I’ve never had lobster.

Living in the interior high desert [Southern Washington State, Eastern Oregon, Western Idaho] most of my life tends to keep me away from lobster binges. Can you buy lobster or find it where I live or have lived? Yes. Did the price of lobster tend to send me off to the lunch meat aisle to see what’s on sale? Yes. Do I think it’s cruel to boil those poor sea spiders alive?? Yes!! 

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Miz Bridge waiting for me to entertain her. Because hey, you’re not writing, she says. Let’s go dig or chase something!

Story. I’ve dithered here in Saint Lysette. It’s changed POV’s. Many times. I now have Nancy, Alice and Lysette all telling the story. Whatever the story is. Which I’m not sure. It won’t coalesce, even a little, somewhere in my foggy writer brain. It does but it’s campy garbage!

Gol darn it!!

I might as well add some clowns and reptilian overlords!! Not that there’s anything wrong with reptilian overlords. There is something profoundly wrong with clowns. Yes, I have fear of clowns. Yes, I do. There’s a fancy word for that even. 

I think, therefore I am…sorry! I think I need to pick a path. Write to the end no matter the horrified faces I make as I write. 

GET THAT MOFO ON THE PAGE YOU DITHERING DITZ!

Get a rough beast shaped up, that I can then go back through and despair over.

After all, I have scrapped entire drafts. Written better versions. Or worse versions. Dang it.

I must examine why I am dithering so. I blame tuna.

Oh if it were that damn easy!

What is the story. That’s what I need to crucify in place with big iron nails. Then watch it rise from the dead a couple times or something? Ugh. Must stop listening to atheist podcasts or atheists taking apart Christian movies made so badly they’re actually in the good column.

I’m also trying to get a screenplay done. A director from the Czech Republic found a short play of mine, made a short film out of it. Traces of Memory. It’s in actual post-production now, as I write this. It looks great. I’m pleased with it.

She also, Lucie, found my book of short stories, Oregon Gothic, and found a tale in there that she wished to turn into a feature-length. One based on…necrophilia. On a woman helping her boyfriend procure a freshly dead woman for sexual purposes.

Lucie wishes it more focused on their relationship. She has the general idea of where she wishes this to go and I am helping shape it out. It’s called Prince Charming so far.

I hope it doesn’t turn out to be another Serbian Tale. If you don’t know what that is or have never heard of it, great. Keep your ignorance. If you do know what that ‘movie’ is, then no, I don’t think Prince Charming is even in the same universe as that one. I’m being cheeky. I’m a cheeky little primate!

Humans are primates, after all, no matter what screaming manbeasts with Jesus tats and a pulpit say. 

I am working on making the rather repulsive pair sympathetic. Understandable.  Which gives the horror element an extra punch in the gut. Layers, y’all.

Must go force myself to work on…something. It’s almost my birthday. I might go to the hills for sustenance and soul feeding as I turn…gulp…fifty. And ponder on the smoking ruins of my life.

I blame it all on tuna.

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The elderly cottonwood showing why it’s called ‘cottonwood’. The big seed pods burst open and look like what cotton does or something. I’ve never seen a cotton field outside of a movie. Or eaten a lobster. 

 

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The Merry Happy Pumpkin Wars

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Tommy McMurtry and Liberty Baptist Church, from Mr. Atheist and YouTube. 

There’s this feud happening over on YouTube. Now it’s everywhere on the internet and real world-wise, between this fucktoad Liberty Baptist pastor and Mr. Atheist AKA Mr. Pumpkin. Actual name? Jimmy Snow.

Tommy McMurtry wants to have a MASA event around the anniversary of the Pulse Nightclub shooting, where he celebrates the deaths. In Orlando, Florida.  He and others want this event to take place in ORLANDO FUCKING FLORIDA BECAUSE HEY LET’S RUB IT IN EXTRA HARD HOW MUCH WE HATE THE GAYS.

You just shrivel up and die a bit over such a thing  so gleefully planned. 

Wait. What is MASA?

Make. America. Straight. Again.

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Note that tag line. Now go pumpkin the hell out of that cuss words cuss words cuss words. 

No, I didn’t make that up nor am I kidding. I didn’t make up the Straight Pride parade happening this August in Boston, MA. Which seems to just be a Trump MAGA rally parade in disguise. Because of course it is.

So. To keep this blessedly brief: Mr. Atheist finds out about this MASA event. He does a rebuttal video, and then works to get McMurtry, who’s buds with Steven Anderson, deplatformed. Due to McMurtry agitating for actual violence against the LGTBQ community. As in the Bible demands such people die, at the hands of government executioners because then it’s not murder. Or something like that. Anderson also preaches along these lines.

If you’re thinking Westboro Baptists, give yourself a gold star! Yep, roughly the same vein of batshit Baptist fundamentalists.

McMurtry strikes back! He goes on record, in public, calling Mr. Atheist the biggest fruit on the planet. Which McMurtry seems to think is a pumpkin. Mr. Atheist, by the way, identifies as pansexual.

Mr. Atheist instead of running away crying like a snowflake, as this moonbat crazy Jesus shouter expected…embraced the pumpkin.

Not only embraced the pumpkin but called upon his followers to do so, too. The biggest fruit, by the way, is the jackfruit. Not the pumpkin.

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The jackfruit. from Hiveminer. 

He also busied his followers to optimize a Google search for McMurtry. As McMurtry pretty much said– that fruit can’t do nothin’…

and Mr. Atheist went, um, yeah, I actually can.

Mr. Atheist also got a collection of other youtube sorts to make a short video blurb.

Basically, it was: I’m not saying Tommy McMurtry is sexually attracted to pumpkins, I’m just saying there’s no way to know.

 

This also went into the Urban Dictionary, all over Google and to other social media sites, such as Twitter. Also, the Tommy McMurtry domain name was purchased, which now features sexy pumpkin drawings. Not even kidding. It is in no way associated with McMurtry, of course…that’s in case I could get sued.

McMurtry is doggedly going forward but it’s clear he did not expect Mr. Atheist to be so creatively ready to take him on. This bully did not expect a pumpkin to fight back at all. Instead of trying to reach out, be an actual Christian leader or something, McMurtry doubles and triples down on what a…pumpkin-hating pricklefuck he is. Homophobic is too mild a word for what he and Anderson and their little band of hatey men actually are.

Why am I bringing any of this up at all? Ah.

I admire Mr. Atheist for taking on this man and his MASA movement like this. He took his rage over all this and turned it into actual action. Merry happy action, at that. He rallied. Anger gets shit done, as Mr. Nancy says over on American Gods. Mr. Atheist was not a door mat here and didn’t ‘let it go’, hoping some fabled future event would solve everything.

Ahem, 2020 elections, ahem. Cough cough.

That’s all. It’s ongoing as of this writing. I know that yesterday there was a shooting scare at the DC Pride parade. I know that hate seems to be winning handily here in Amerikkka.

Pumpkins seem an odd way to find actual hope and light and relief from the constant inertia that seems to be the left anything right now. But there are people finding merry ways to meet hate and crush it beneath rotund squash that get used for Satan’s Day. That’s Halloween, for everyone else.

#PumpkinPosse unite!

Happy Pride month!

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from pride.com

 

June News

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It’s June. Hello, June.

Hot. Ugh. It’s hot. 

With that out of the way–

I just found out a short piece of mine will get into A Door Is A Jar-– By Starlight By Starlight My Dear. 

I also have a poem, My Feet Hurt, in the Rumpus’s Enough, and not sure when that comes out. 

I am also working on St. Lysette and Bloody Alice, which is the THIRD BOOK in the House on Clark Boulevard trilogy. 

And a screenplay based on a short story of mine. I need to get on that. Ugh a bug! 

So, the little writing goblins showed up, bit me in improper places, and here we are. 

 

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A storm about to hit. That’s the Malheur Butte
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Gorgeous clouds against a Ford tractor. 

A Discovery of Sugar Cookies

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Teresa Palmer and Matthew Goode as Diana Bishop and Matthew Clairmont in A Discovery of Witches. 

Now, I’ll try not to wander over a thou words. Promises promises.

I realized my last two posts boil down to EXPECTATIONS. Yes, television is a frivolous wasteland for brain-dead zombies who are just about the most asleep of the non-woke sorts ever. That’s why I wuv it. Cutesy and sad. I rock!

I settle in for the new series, heavily advertised. A Discovery of Witches.

Witches!!

Vampires!!

Something dark, creamy, decadent, lots o’fun, I hope with all the hope that yet clings to the inner tunnels of my decaying soul.

Ah. Discovery of Witches. Apparently, it’s three books. The dreaded and dreary trilogy! Not that all trilogies are that, of course. Some are even famous. Real famous. I’ve never heard of this one, I admit it here. So. I don’t know this story. I have no idea where it’s headed. All Souls? Souls for All? Equal but Separate Souls?

I settle in to enjoy me some witches and vampires. Cause I like witches and vampires. And ghosts. And zombies. And assorted other monsters and psycho killers and creatures that populate your basic horror movie to your basic high fantasy expanses.

And that first episode. Some smartie historical gal has POWERS and there’s this MYSTERIOUS VAMPIRE DUDE who lurks around testing blood. Diana [I have to keep checking what her name is!] checks out a book! From the restricted section of Hogwarts! Sorry, no, that’s…nope. Cambat? Tower of Loins? Oxballs? Eh. I’m clearly resisting the SPELL of this show.

Had to. Had to.

Now, the vampire dude, named Bill, nope, it’s Edward…er, Matthew, LURKS around Dingus, er, Diana a lot. Oh shoo, is her name Sookie? Isabel?? Diana, like Wonder Woman!

He’s rich? There’s ropes and whips…er. No. Uh. I’m not sure what the plot is here. Other than witches and vampires HATE each other. There’s demons but am not sure what they can do or why they exist in this particular witchvamp-verse.

Oh, there’s a council. Where the three groups decide stuff. A sort of secret cabal of supernatural politicians. 

There’s the older witch guy who was on…wait for it…Game of Thrones. He’s also nasty in this show. But I’d rather watch him and the dark-haired interesting witch woman from Finland than Dingus and Matt. I felt more chemistry between those two than Vanilla and Safe But Dangerously Smoldering Cuddle God. The Gentle Monster Who Can Kill You But Won’t, He Promises. [Bill of True Blood. Beast from Beauty and the Beast. Edward Cullen from Twilight. Angel from Buffy. Etc!]

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Owen Teale as Peter Knox. Alliser Thorne on GOT.

Ah, there it is! The central heroine is a bland blond nothing to me. [She’s a sugar cookie!] Another Earnest Serious Humorless Flat Glass of Stale Water. She also falls in love LIKE THAT with vampire dude. I do mean LUV, TROOO LUV.

[Is that scene from the Princess Bride echoing in your head right now? Yeah. Exactly!]

They are attractive folks and they bump uglies. Usually with a fireplace and candles nearby. Yet, their love is FORBIDDEN. Cause it’s a LAW.

That Dingus knows nothing about cause she’s been sheltered from witch stuff. By her lesbian aunt and lesbian aunt’s partner. [Who killed the dead parents?? Ah, plot, there is one.]

Diana seems to be some sort of super-concentrated uberwitch. Hence why blood being tested. Parallels to True Blood and Sookie’s fey blood. Oh gosh. My attention wanders…when was the last time I vacuumed?

Now!

Matt’s ma is one of my fave actresses from Rome and elsewhere. Love her! She’s tall, cool, gorgeous and veddy British. She can also make whatever nonsense they pay her to say sound fabulous. I loved her in Under the Tuscan Sun…which has to be the ultimate girly girl movie ever made in the history of ever. A two hour movie on renovating an old Tuscan villa. With Sandra Oh and Rory Gilmore’s dad in it. Where was I?

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Lindsey Duncan as Ysabeau de Clermont. Servilia on Rome. Katherine on Under the Tuscan Sun. 

Matt’s ma is some upercrust French lady with an estate and she eats guts and blood. None of the vampires seem affected by sunlight but I might have been napping during most of D ofW’s scenes. It’s beautifully shot, there’s that going for it.

I saw somewhere that D of W is Twilight for adults. Oh dear…now I can’t unmarry that from my views on this show. Now I see our Bland Vanilla heroine as Bella allowed to grow up and have to be rescued all the time. By her vampire paramour who runs down deer to eat. As Vampire Dude ran down a stag, as did Eddy Cullen. Oh damn it. Parallels. My weird “hate Twilight but have to watch Twilight” obsession-compulsion disorder is circling back to chomp at me. Ouch. Ouch!

Bella, er, Dingus, er…what is her name? does begin to try and explore her powers so she can rescue her little self 20% of the time instead of none of the time. Maybe she’s a Dark Phoenix-like witch…her powers are so awful and destructive it was just safer to suppress them. Is that where this is headed? Yes, I did just reference the X-Men.

Yes, I will attempt to get through the finale but I doubt I’ll watch another season. I feel like we’ve been down this overly explored road. True Blood, Twilight, Fifty Shades, ugh all the others I can’t recall right now.

To sum up!

Can’t wait to watch Carson choosing wines for the King and Queen of England on Downton.

GOT limped to a close. I think they chopped off all but the left arm kind of limping.

Discovery of Witches doesn’t seem to be my Bloody Mary.

964 word count or so. Promises kept.

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Game of Sighs

 

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Hey, you have to laugh at your ten year commitment to a TV show. You have to!

Game of Thrones. Oh sigh. Sorry, this gets long in the old tooth. But it’s fairly superficial. So. Yay? 

 It felt like the writers just went how many fans can we piss off. It felt like sabotage of their entire carefully crafted show.

I’ll try not to include spoilers but if you’re not a fan or have never seen a GOT episode, well.

I didn’t get about to watching Breaking Bad until well after it had aired its last ep. Same with Mad Men.

I didn’t start watching Buffy [stop it, stop giggling, I still love that show.] until the end of season two. I had no idea what was going on, but…HOLY HELL THIS IS GREAT AND SAD AND MUST WATCH RELIGIOUSLY FROM NOW ON.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend!! I missed the first season but IT’S ONE OF MY FAVE SHOWS EVER EVER EVER. Musical numbers, West Covina, characters so well crafted it seems a shame nobody watched this…!

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Bwha ha ha ha. It ends with Ned Stark waking up, going, oh my gosh, I had the strangest dream…

GOT. The great giant BATTLE between good and evil seemed rushed. That’s a polite word for it. True, we can’t spend bazillions of episodes on the one side getting ready to face some snow zombies but still. Oh wait…yes, we can. We spent eight fucking seasons doing that. Winter is coming!

Also, Jon’s resurrection? Was for? To get rid of the Crazy Mother of the Broken Chains? Cause…that seems not plausible on part of story or writing or characters. It seems a hit job on Dany, most of all.

We watched her not be insane for eight seasons, after all. We watched her learn to master herself, to listen to others, to trust herself and her instincts to help people.

Yes, she did go on the occasional murder sprees. But they were, like, totally called for. [Yes, I am justifying, Yes, I am. Am I ashamed of that? Not even a little.]

Before this, when a city or whatever surrendered, they were not then slaughtered in a wholesale and ghastly fashion. What she did to King’s Landing seems so totally out of character.

The bells ringing meant the city had surrendered. That it was over. Soldiers put down their weapons. And then, Dracarys! Fire! Destruction! Death death death! After the surrender. Um? Was there a bonus promised for use of dragon in this episode?

I’d have been fine with her fate if…if it had been set up far better than it was. Oh my goodness, that would have been one for the actual ages. To watch this girl of good intentions turn into the very thing she claims to hate…and we get to go on that journey with her instead of our jaws dropping in outrage at the sudden out of seemingly nowhere shifts someone put into play to…what, for what purpose?

What if Dany could have been…well. Too late now! What’s done is done, cannot be undone, to quote yet another lady treated to abrupt character assassinations. That lady from that Scottish play, sleepwalking with a candle.

Also, the backbone of GOT has always been Tyrion Lannister. I want to give a salute to Peter Dinklage for that. Salute, sir!

That said, when he had to make that speech about Bran. To, sigh, name Bran, contender for king of it all…fuck. Just no. No. Nope.

We went through eight seasons of Jon Snow acting kingly, with the Mom of Flying Lizards conquering everything she could and then some…only to have both shunted aside like smelly tampons so that Bran, the creepy raven supervillain whatever, could…win it all? Who even claimed he wanted nothing to do with being Lord of Winterfell or….mm.

Also, Gendry is an actual heir to the Iron Throne. And Jon is a Targaryen. A legitimate one. All of that build up? For? Um? Bran to be…king? Um?

Now, I get, as a writer, subverting expectations. I get that one. You build toward something, then smash that but…what direction you head has to be EARNED. It has to make some sort of logical sense within the world you created. You can’t play actual tricks with your audience because your audience is smart. They trusted you to tell a good story. They trusted in your structure. To betray that trust out of spite or hubris or arrogance…um, just don’t. To me, also, this seemed a bunch of writers not trusting where this story wanted to go. The organic flow seems off. Yeah,  I went there! 

GOT turned out not to be a good story. That’s my biggest chunk of gristly fatty beef here. I expected better. I got a rushed, flat, improbable set of discordant jarring leftovers thrown together and nuked in a half-working microwave.

The reunion between Ghost and Jon was second only to Sansa being named Queen of the North. Arya sailing off for parts unknown? Sweet! The Starks won but it seems the rest of us watching, waiting, hoping, despairing, cheering, sobbing…lost.

Also, women can’t do power? Does that mean Sansa will go mad, too, and have to be put down by Bran’s armies? Is that the next Game of Thrones book? A Song of Mad Sisters Who Should Smile More?

Oh and Tyrion finding Jaimie and Cersei…!

Sorry, a truck full of cut up onions must have invisibly driven by.

Now, a major or minor show ending its run is always cause for gritting the teeth, hoping for the best. Hoping it’s not terrible or flat or a host of other expectations that are so seldom met.

Battlestar Galatica, anyone?

The mixed reaction to Mad Men’s finale?

Seinfeld? Roseanne’s series finale! Then, the reboot, which is now canceled…mmm. 

Big Bang Theory just ended, and that was actually quite a lovely send off. Well done there.

But. Game of Sighs indeed. For once. They should have given the fans what they wanted. Not a happy ending but a better ending than that. The Jon and Ghost reunion, yes. Well done. Thanks.

I also want to give a nod to one of my other fave characters. The Hound.  That dour, gruff, and yes, very flawed character. Well played, with a dry humor.  I also want a Hound and Tormund buddy comedy…oh. Can’t have that now. Sigh. The Hound’s end, eh. I was…maybe I need to watch it again. 

I’ll end there. Others have picked this carcass thoroughly, for hours at a time, usually dressed up in GOT garb. With the minute attention to detail of a detective after a serial killer! Goodbye, murdery rapey lots of boobies and some cool ass dragons show!

Oh. There’s a prequel? Better Call Saul turned out pretty good. Young Sheldon is far better than it has a right to be. So…maybe? Maybe they’ll remember what made the first three or four seasons of GOT soar like a baby dragon?

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from Vulture.  Left corner–Dany, dragon. Cersei pixie cut. Jon sexy blood look. Sansa. Sansa’s mom Kat. Arya. Tyrion Lannister. Night King peeking over the right edge there. 
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Tormund and Brienne of Tarth. Kristopher Hivju and Gwendoline Christie.
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Sandor Clegane AKA the Hound. Rory McCann
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Tormund and Lyanna Mormont. Bella Ramsey, actress